My Top 10 Essentials for a Natural, Manageable Pregnancy

Here are 10 key tools that helped me have a holistic and natural pregnancy… and ultimately deliver my baby girl without any drugs or interventions.

Here are 10 key tools that helped me have a holistic and natural pregnancy... and ultimately delivery my baby girl without any drugs or interventions.

I was thankful for so many things during my second pregnancy…

  • First, that my son Griffin became potty-trained in early summer. It was an easy process without a lot of drama. Love that kid! (Need tips? Check out this post and video.)
  • Second, I got through a few months of queasiness with this supplement.
  • And third, my husband was home more and I wasn’t working in Corporate America (yoga pants, here I come!)

I was also incredibly grateful that my tests, blood work, blood pressure, and ultrasound all came back with no issues or abnormalities. Thank you God!

I do have to say that it was a tougher pregnancy though because I was chasing after a 3 year old; we moved to a new place; and my activity levels were MUCH HIGHER compared with my previous pregnancy where I sat at a desk for 8 hours a day.

Overall, I found some really helpful tools that allowed me manage my natural pregnancy well, including these. (check out my postpartum recovery essentials too)

Tools that helped me have a natural pregnancy

1. Raspberry Leaf Tea


This nice tasting tea helps tone the uterus and pelvic muscles and is great for childbirth. Most midwives and OB-GYNs recommend drinking RRL teaย in the 2nd trimester on since it can trigger some uterine cramping. I never had an issue with myself but be sure to check with doctor.

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2. Magnesium Oil


This topical magnesium is so very easy for the body to absorb and instantly calmed and soothed my body. Magnesium can also help with morning sickness, fatigue, constipation and gestational diabetes.

3. Exercise ball


Because I want a natural childbirth, I used this exercise ball often as my “chair.” It keeps the pelvis forward and in good alignment. Now,

don’t get me wrong, in the first trimester, you better believe I was reclining, lounging and engulfed in our super comfy, oversized couch. But, once I was nearing my 3rd trimester, I started using this exercise ball which helps strengthen your core as you sit. It also is great to lean on during labor. Bottom line, this handy tool can get baby into optimal position for birth. (More on that here.)

4. HCL/Pepsin

Especially in the first trimester and now in the third, I find my digestion can get a little wonky when pregnant. The pregnancy hormones can slow down our digestive process, which can lead to heartburn, acid reflux and nausea. In enters this HCL/Pepsin supplement… HCL is something our stomachs secrete naturally during digestion so I like that it “mimics” and supports this process. I found 1-2 capsules per meal worked great to keep any tummy troubles at bay. You can see all the supplements I took while pregnant here.

5. Supernatural Childbirth

This little book has been such a God send. While I’m not 100% convinced that a painless childbirth is possible :), I do appreciate reading the testimonials and Scripture that helps support a more spiritual birth. I love the prayers for conception, for the growing child in utero, and for the delivery itself. HUGE FAITH BUILDER! There’s also this great audio piece that’s great to listen to throughout day.

6. Lemonade

Take 2 lemons. Squeeze through strainer into a quart Mason jar. Add filtered water and about 10 drops of stevia. Add a dash of sea salt. This delicious drink has been my go-to this pregnancy. I find it helps not only getting my fluids in for the day but also aids digestion.


This website, while not the most user-friendly, contains a WEALTH of helpful information on baby positioning. Why is that important? Well, generally speaking, the better position our baby is in, the easier our childbirth will be. You can learn more about here and here.

8. Pumpkin Spice Lattes

This tasty little beverage has been a lovely gift throughout the later half of my pregnancy. The warm milk… the sweet spices… the pumpkin flavor… and so much better than the Starbucks version. Since I’m sensitive to caffeine, I use a naturally decaffeinated coffee like this one for my lattes.

9. The Mama Natural Week-By-Week Guide to Pregnancy & Childbirth!

If you want to feel empowered and inspired, be sure to pick up a copy of my natural pregnancy guide!

10. All of YOU!

The support, love and wisdom within this community keeps me going. I have LOVED sharing this pregnancy with you and hearing so many inspiring stories from all of you. Thank you for sharing yourselves so freely and being positive examples of Natural Mamas ๐Ÿ™‚

Are you pregnant? Planning a shower?

Here’s everything you need to know about creating a baby registry.

How bout YOU? What are your essentials during pregnancy? Share with us!

Genevieve Howland

About the Author

Genevieve Howland is a childbirth educator and breastfeeding advocate. She is the bestselling author of The Mama Natural Week-by-Week Guide to Pregnancy and Childbirth and creator of the Mama Natural Birth Course. A mother of three, graduate of the University of Colorado, and YouTuber with over 130,000,000 views, she helps mothers and moms-to-be lead healthier and more natural lives.


  1. I can’t drink tea; or lemonade; (both are bad for the voice); Tea makes my voice gravelly or clearing my throat; (& lemonade is worse;) Lemonade it didn’t take me no time to stop; tea took me a while; but I quit doing both in my mid-teens. Any other suggestions? (I sing.) (Raspberry I can deal with.) Beth

    • Try water with a little bit of lemon, a few slices of ginger and some honey. Super tasty and smooth. Plus the lemon , ginger and honey are all healing foods that your body will love.

  2. I started using magnesium oil. Is it weird that I think it smells good?
    It made my skin itchy for a few hours after I used it. Is that normal?
    Also, my bottle says 4-5 sprays over the area and then rub in. Where should I be applying? I did my belly for today but what about just spraying liberally after the bath? Would that be better?

    • Yes, the itching is normal I think; that happens for me w/ magnesium spray.

    • Spray on your forearm or the bottom of your feet. Thatโ€™s where youโ€™ll absorb it best. Do it after you shower when your pores are open. A tingly feeling for a little bit is totally normal.

  3. Thank you for the tips! Def gonna get the supernatural book! I love that youre spiritual and into the natural way of things. Awesome! This will be our second baby born at home. Blessed to have this resource, thank you!

  4. Hi!
    What supplement did you use for queasiness? The link wouldn’t work. Just took me to Amazon.

    I just bought some Wish Garden morning sickness tincture that the lady at the apothecary swears by. ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Yes that wish garden stuff works wonders. She linked a vitamin B6 supplement though.

  5. Hi

    You mention an essential oil book you use on the plugged ducts blog, can you recommend one for all things natural .

  6. so glad I found your site…I am 30 weeks pregnant and feeling overwhelmed. This article gave me instant calm AND hello HCL/Pepsin!!! Heartburn is my number one all day complaint. Much love to you!

    • I used papaya enzyme with my last two pregnancies and it was super helpful with indigestion ๐Ÿ˜‰

  7. Hi! I bought the oil and b6 you suggested. Where do I rub the oil and how many times a day? Your response is really appreciated! Thank you so much

  8. Hello,
    Regarding the magnesium oil: How many sprays per application? How frequent do you apply?

    • 30-40 sprays!!

      Helps tremenedously.

  9. I used magnesium serene after meals before bedtime to help relax my nerves and the twitching I was having in my legs. Helps tremendously!

  10. I loved Supernatural Childbirth. My daughter’s birth did not go as “planned” to say the least, but even though I was on Pitocin, OP baby and pushed for 2 hours, I didn’t get an epidural and never felt like the pain was that bad. People think I’m NUTS when I tell them that, especially due to being on Pit. I do feel like the Lord gave me a Supernatural childbirth.

  11. Wonderful share! Much LoVe and gratitude to you.. xXx

  12. Hi Genevieve,
    Which prenatal do you suggest?? Thanks!!

  13. Hi, thank you for this list. I wonder did you take magnesium pills besides magnesium oil, can someone overdose while taking magnesium pills and magnesium oil ? Thank you

    • Yes, your body can get too much magnesium. I would use one or the other, not both

  14. My neighbor had a copy of Supernatural Childbirth and let me borrow it. It has been such a blessing for me, too! I am so excited to hear that it helped you, too! Congrats on baby girl Paloma!

  15. I found this just in time (again), I just found out I’m pregnant and although excited a little nervous. When I was pregnant with my first I had every sickness you can think of and was scared to try things thinking it would hurt the baby. Glad to have ran across this and thanks for the helpful info

  16. Hi Genevieve,
    I appreciate your blog too! It is good to find like-minded mama’s! I read a lot of Supernatural Childbirth and believed Jesus for it (I didn’t read the testimonials part though)! He really gave me the labor and delivery we prayed for (I had been praying for a 2 hr labor, but I did have GBS so then I asked Him for 4 hours because of needing the a/b. I woke up at 1:40 AM needing to use the bathroom, realized my water broke because I was having some leaking, went to the birth center by 2 (not having any contractions yet though), heavy contractions started just after 3:30 AM, she was born at 5:31 AM—9 min shy of 4 hours. Isn’t God Great?! And the more intense part was just less than 2 hours—my original prayer!) I labored standing up which still surprises me when I say it, but it is the way I felt less pressure and more comfortable. I experienced pressure, and the only part that hurt was when her head was “crowning.” However, when the contraction came again, I pushed and her head was out and then the rest of her slid out. So it only hurt between those 2 contractions. Was it in that book that they suggest smiling about bringing a new life into the world? It really works to smile! ๐Ÿ™‚ My husband and my mom prayed the delivery prayer over me and my baby. She will be 1 in less than a month! Wow! This year has gone quickly! I also have a son (4); you are where I was this time last year. ๐Ÿ™‚ It will be a busy time with 2, but I know you will enjoy it. They are only young once and it goes so quickly. Have fun dressing her up for the different holidays~ mine has 2 “firsts” left: Thanksgiving and birthday! Saying a prayer for you right now!

  17. I’m very glad, to found your blog. I am 12 weeks pregnant lady, so this all things are very useful for me and my baby. Pregnancy is very good experience For me, this is my first baby.

  18. Hi Genevieve,

    I just wanted to wish you all the best with your delivery! You and Papa Natural are going to do fantastic! I have really enjoyed following your blog (esp. over the past 9 months of your pregnancy). Its gotten me pumped up to start trying for #2 ๐Ÿ™‚
    Much love and I can’t wait to see your gorgeous baby girl whenever you and Papa Natural come out of the baby bubble!

  19. Hello Genevieve aka Mama Natural!

    I just want to thank your for your wonderful blog and positive and loving spirit. I found your blog about 6 months ago, and I have been greatly blessed by all your wonderful resources, honest and encouraging words, and just your fun spirit and heart. Thank you. I know you will do fantastic with your Thanksgiving Day Miracle! ( : I have a little 17 month old boy, and I absolutely LOVE being his mommy! On a small side note, we are still happily breastfeeding but I am longing to be pregnant again as I am reaching late 30’s. I don’t want to give up breastfeeding until my sweet boy is ready. Were you able to conceive while still breastfeeding Griffin? This may be too personal. Anyway, thank you and GOD BLESS!

    • Thanks for your kind words, Riann!

      Yes, I was able to conceive ๐Ÿ™‚

  20. I loved using Red Raspberry Leaf Tea this time around as well. And I did have a pain-free childbirth in our bath tub at home! (You can read about it on my blog if you would like the details!

    It was such a welcome and glorious experience, especially since our first one did not go that way. My number one essential (besides prayer!) was the hypnobabies program. I bought the book and did it myself at home. Best $12 I’ve spent!

    I am praying for you and that all goes well! Love reading each and every one of your posts!

    Heather @frugalgreenbaby

    • Incredible Heather! Can’t wait to read your story ๐Ÿ™‚

      • I hope it encourages and inspires you– just like your blog does for me ๐Ÿ™‚

  21. I am so so grateful that I found your blog! I work as a lot and delivery nurse in a hospital where “natural birth” doesn’t exist. It it so wonderfully reassuring to know there is a contingency of mamas out there who believe in the same pregnancy, birth and parenting philosophies/practices as I do. Good luck with the rest of your pregnancy and keep Doug what you’re doing! You’re work is appreciated!

      • Marisa D., mamanatural is great and I wanted to see if you have ever heard of ? You sound similar to myself before I found these sites. It felt like I was the only one into natural birthing and parenting ect. has very active forums and ann online community of compassionate like-minded women. You should really check it out! I always have two tabs open with mamanatural and mothering. Hope this helps! And you’re not the only one! ๐Ÿ™‚

  22. I love your blog! I’m a mom of 8 children (all from my husband and myself!), the first was an unnecessary c-section and the other 7 have been home VBACs :). Anyway, I think you’re doing an awesome job as a mom and just want to encourage you that you don’t *have* to stop after two children :). I know everyone doesn’t want a large family, but you may regret not at least leaving the possibility of a third. And sorry, I know this is not my business, but when you talk/write about this baby being your last, I always think, “It doesn’t have to be!”

    • As the second daughter of 8, I totally agree! Way to go on the VBACs! Same as my aunt (except for the homebirth part)!

      And for some laughs about yoga pants and motherhood, please have a laugh and watch this!

    • I’m always open to changing my mind ๐Ÿ™‚ We’ll see how it goes ๐Ÿ™‚ You’re a super mama in my view. WOW, 8!!!

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